Developed for a great number of years exclusive to the console platform, Namco Bandai’s Tekken series has always been at the forefront of graphical prowess. Dating to back to the original PlayStation way back in 1995, used as a technological showpiece for what the system was capable off. Running at a solid 60 frames-per-second while still maintaining an impressive visual aesthetic that wasn’t too far behind its competitors, Tekken continuously took advantage of each respective platforms throughout its following sequels – employing an amazing set of features and tricks in order to push the limits of visual possibilities.
Continuing to see releases on the PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and the Nintendo Wii-U, Tekken has finally arrived on the PC – making great use of the many hardware configurations available to the developers. Scaling across the Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and the PS4 Pro at various resolutions and graphical qualities, Tekken 7 gives the impression of being quite demanding on hardware – unjustified by the level of visual quality that’s on display. By no means a bad looking game, Tekken 7’s move to the Unreal Engine 4 offers a great number of visual effects and post–processing techniques that give the game a fast and frantic explosive styling, with a great foray of environmental details to help flesh out the stages.
Testing the game across a number of different hardware configurations we decided to see what it takes to run Tekken 7 at a solid 60 frames-per-second at the highest possible graphical settings, along with the highest resolution possible for each graphics card. Tekken 7 offers up four graphical presets consisting of Low, Medium, High and Ultra, along with Custom for those who want to tweak individual aspects of the graphical settings. These options consist off Resolution, V-Sync, Anti-Aliasing, Shadow Settings, Texture Quality, Effect Quality, and Post–Processing Quality. Allowing for further adjustments with modern options for scaling we see Dynamic Adjustment. This works by scaling the level of visual quality up and down during gameplay in order to maintain the game’s 60Hz refresh rate.
Along with the Rendering Scale option which gives gamers the means to scale the internal rendering resolution on a percentage basis to that of the native display, Tekken 7 proves great in providing choice. Staple to the series since its incarnation a Motion Blur feature is also present. Given the game’s 60Hz refresh-rate the need for such an effect doesn’t hold much use. Differing from console to console Tekken 7 delivers similar results between the PlayStation 4 and Xbox one, albeit with a few minor disparities. Mainly residing within the resolution across each platform Tekken 7 targets 1280x720p on Xbox One, 1536x864p on PlayStation 4, and 1920x1080p on PS4 Pro. Graphical settings place the Xbox One with less than stellar texture filtering, lack of Ambient Occlusion and missing depth-of-field. PlayStation 4 and PS4 Pro pairs back lighting and bloom effects, retaining the aforementioned features.
One peculiar aspect I’ve come to notice in the game is the softness of the image and how this is combined with post–processing filters in order to deliver a natural aesthetic – primarily within the environments. Similar to the technique used in Shadow Warrior 2, Tekken 7 appears to use a rendering solution much similar to that of Nvidia’s Multi-Res Shading. While I can’t be certain that this is the case, the resolution is appears to be reduced where the image it is not within the player’s immediate view towards the centre of the screen. While this could in-fact just be a subtle implementation of depth-of-field combined with multiple post-processing filters, it appears to be at odds with the rest of the game when paying attention to the background scenery. Something which just so happens to ruin the overall image of the game given the amount of attention and detail being taken to its overall level design.
However, this is where the the PC seeks the most benefits over its console variants as the potential to the increase resolution somewhat combats this issue, even if it’s not entirely removed. Rendering resolution aside, remaining visual benefits come in the form of an enhanced Ambient-Occlusion, increased texture filtering, improved lighting and bloom effects, along with a greater implementation to depth-of-field and post-processing. It is worth noting however, Ultra setting post-processing only adds chromatic aberration to the image, along with motion blur this is considered by many to have a negative effect on the presentation.
For testing purposes I decided to take this opportunity to see just how well the game scales across multiple performance tiers and generations of graphics cards. As the majority of gamers are not in-fact running the latest High-End graphics cards and are most likely going to have GPUs dating back a few generations – along with varying performance levels this seemed to be the most authentic representation of real-world gameplay. This also demonstrates how well the game may be optimized.
Graphics Cards & Test Rig:
GTX 980Ti – Prior Generation / Modern Performance Rating: High-End
GTX 1060 (6GB) – Current Generation / Modern Performance Rating: Mid-Range
GTX 760 (2GB) Prior Two Generation / Modern Performance Rating: Low-Mid
GTX 560Ti (1GB) Prior Fourth Generation / Modern Performance Rating: Low-End
CPU: Intel Core i5 7400 3GHz
RAM: 8GB Corsair 2133mhz Vengeance LPX DDR4
GTX 560Ti (1GB)
Proving to be a fantastic graphics card even till this day the Mid-Range – now Low-End GPU from 2011 delivered a great showing in Tekken 7. Equipped with 384 cores clocked at 900MHz, along with 1GB of GDDR5 memory at 5500MHz, the GTX 560Ti turned in performance results worthy of “Console-Killer” status. Where the Xbox One delivers visual quality settings much similar to the High preset at 1280x720p resolution, despite its incredibly low specifications the GTX 560Ti takes this to Ultra settings.
1600x900p / Medium Settings: 60FPS
1280x720p / High Settings: 60FPS
1280x720p / Ultra Settings: 50-60FPS
GTX 760 (2GB)
Equipped with a great deal more power than the GTX 560Ti, the GTX 760 features 1152 cores at 1033MHz, with 2GB of GDDR5 memory at a blazing fast 6000MHz. Equipped with a 256-bit memory bus just like the GTX560Ti, memory bandwidth is plenty, handing in 60 frames-per-second at 1080p resolution on Ultra settings. From this battle we can see the GTX 760 breaks no sweat is taking down the king of the iron fist tournament.
1920x1080p / Ultra Settings: 60FPS
GTX 1060 (6GB)
As Nvidia’s current generation Mid-Range graphics card the GTX 1060 naturally delivers more performance than the prior two GPUs as well as all three consoles. With the 192-bit memory bus in no way holding it back the GTX 1060 curb-stomps Tekken without any issues. Fitted with 1280 cores and 6GB of GDDR5 RAM, the incredibly fast 8000MHz memory speed ensures a consistent 60 frames-per-second at 2560x1440p resolution.
2560x1440p / Ultra Settings: 60FPS
While I don’t have a video present to demonstrate the results, those running this incredible card will be pleased to know that 4K resolution as well as those in the Ultra Wide format is more than viable. It should be noted that at this current time Namco Bandai has provided no official support for Ultra Wide aspect ratios and this is only viable through a Third-Party mod.
Namco Bandai have clearly done an amazing job in bringing Tekken to the PC platform. While the oddities surrounding the performance of each console seem to be at odds with lesser hardware on the PC clearly pulling ahead, there’s no doubting the amount of optimization that went in to the PC release. Turning in 4K/60 frames-per-second gameplay on Mid to High-End graphics cards, along with 6 year old bargain-bucket GPUs walking all over modern-day game consoles, Tekken 7 plays great, looks great and performs great.
This blog will be an on-going feature with additional graphics cards being tested from various performance tiers.